Is Erdogan Trying to Recreate Ottoman Empire?

In response to my post: Syria Spotlight From the Horse’s Mouth: Syrian President Bashar Assad – Exclusive Interview to the Russian Media,

reader James Cook says

Could we perhaps have your take on the following quote from the last part of Assad’s interview?

President Erdogan belongs intellectually to the Muslim Brotherhood. Consequently, he believes that, if the situation changed in Syria, Egypt, and Iraq, it means the creation of a new sultanate; not an Ottoman sultanate this time, but a sultanate for the Brotherhood extending from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean and ruled by Erdogan.

Lada’s Take

(see more posts in Ask Lada category)

First thing we all have to keep in mind is that Assad and Erdogan are personal enemies. They hate each other for a variety of reasons. They belong to very different branches of Islam. They represent diverging directions of the Middle Eastern tradition and thought. In everything they do they feel they get in each other’s way.

Turkey and Erdogan have behaved very un-neighborly towards Syria, and it’s understandable that Syrian leader has a grudge against Erdogan.

Turkey in fact is presently fighting a war on several fronts. That includes the internal war with the opposition fed by the West. Syria and Assad’s situation is very difficult, but Erdogan cannot be envied either.

All this is part of the huge karmic opening of old wounds and the beginning of the shift in the Middle East. There is no corner of the globe where the Earth Shift will not be felt, in some places more, in some less. It all depends on how much work the people of a specific region or country have done in the past to clean up their house. Some countries have gone in the past through some very hard, and at times, excruciating work to change their situation. Countries like that include China, Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan. Other countries may have kept their house in relative order. Switzerland is one example. Such countries will go through the Earth Shift with relative ease.

However, the countries that failed to address their problems, simply sweeping them under the rug, will have to deal with a lot of turmoil. Such example is Ukraine. Many countries of the Middle East are also good examples.

The problems of the Middle East are magnified by the local rivalries, lack of acceptance of another’s point of view, and religious intolerance.

Therefore, while Assad himself may believe adamantly what he says, anything he says about Erdogan and Turkey has to be taken with a grain of salt.

This is not to say he is wrong.

But Assad, for one, is brewing in this soup of local rivalries, which often makes it hard, if not impossible, to see a bigger picture. And two, Assad remains a very experienced politician. Knowing his big interview with the Russian media would receive a wide international resonance, he obviously tried to stack the cards to his advantage.

Remember we had talked about targeted info dumps? This is one. More about it: Learn to Tell a Hoax from Targeted Info Dump. It’s not a hoax, but it’s a targeted and manipulated in a certain way message meant for specific audience.

Although this interview is given to the Russian media, the message isn’t necessarily meant for Russia, although I’m certain some Russian Middle East specialists are paying attention. But Russia is firmly in Assad’s corner.

It is meant mostly for the EU and some of the Middle Eastern countries, such as Egypt – the largest military power in the Middle East, which often provides the stabilizing element. Egypt powers that be also have a very serious beef with Muslim Brotherhood. The message is also possibly meant for Saudis and Israelis. Iran and Syria are likely on the same page, but it is a reminder for Iran as well. This info dump is meant to scare the recipients into making sure Turkey and Erdogan don’t gain more power. Basically, this is something that will make different powers work together on curbing Turkey’s ambitions.

Assad desperately needs Turkey to weaken. Turkey, together with US, has been training Syrian opposition militants and has been helping any force, including ISIL, that fights the Syrian government. Turkey has been sabotaging the Kurdish attempts to fight ISIL as well. The Kurds, spread around several Middle Eastern countries, want to reunite and demand their own state. They are perceived by Erdogan as a big problem. Therefore, anything Kurds do becomes automatically at odds with what Erdogan wants done.

The entire Middle Eastern scene is extremely convoluted and entangled. It’s simply brimming with controversy and confusion. Sometimes it looks like a war of all against everyone. In the geopolitical arena anyone is regarded with great distrust and suspicion and alliances change on a whim.

Erdogan is put in a very precarious position. Elections are coming. At the same time, Turkey has been housing 2 million Syrian refugees. These are the refugees that Erdogan is now delivering to the border with Greece and sending off to Europe.

Meanwhile, Turkey is trying to quell internal conflict that keeps flaring up. This conflict has its historic roots inside the country, in part because of Erdogan’s stance on Syria and Kurds. The Kurds themselves constantly remind Erdogan they want independence. But the internal conflict has outside sponsors. It flared up and spread after Erdogan and Putin agreed on Turkish Stream. The idea of these well-known outside forces is to create so much instability in Turkey that Turkish Stream would become impossible.

Turkey’s geopolitical position has always been considered super-valuable. But at this time of extreme Earth Shift, it is also a very precarious position, open to all the winds. Erdogan, both because of his policies and because of his geopolitical realities, is finding himself without allies. He gets criticised and attacked from all directions. As I said, he is fighting a war on several fronts.

For several centuries, the Ottoman Empire dominated the Middle East. People still remember that. They certainly don’t want the Turkish-based dominance back. This adds to the suspicion of Turkey. Under such circumstances Erdogan has to look for any sort of affinities and allies wherever he can find them.

There are several powers vying for the dominance in the Middle East: these are Turkey, Iran and Egypt, plus, Saudi Arabia. Saudis are the richest in the Middle East, and they still have the stigma of being USA’s ally, therefore being percieved as being supported by powerful sponsors, whether it’s true any more, or not. Saudis are good at political games, but their army, while very well equipped, isn’t good at fighting. They still have a lot of pull. Israel also has to be factored in, although it’s a different story.

Turkey and Erdogan do dream of dominating the Middle East. Does Erdogan want to increase his influence and re-create the old Ottoman empire in some form? Yes, to a degree, he does. But not necessarily the way Assad portrays it. For one I don’t know if Muslim Brotherhood is that likely to appoint Erdogan their leader, surrendering their power to him. Why would they? They exist as a set structure, with their own chain of command. The most they can do is agree on some sort of alliance.

But more than anything, Turkey wants to be a world player, be accepted on the world stage. Regardless of how Erdogan feels about Muslim Brotherhood, he is a politician first and foremost. In order to be a regional player, Turkey needs to have solid ties with EU, Russia and at least some of the key Middle Eastern countries. Erdogan is trying, but for him it’s one step forward and two backward. Erdogan, by some of his actions, has put himself in a way of confrontation and isolation. This will not create more influence for Turkey, just the opposite.

At the same time, Turkey’s geopolitical location is very important. Turkey is needed as a player, and as a factor. This is the desire of all major powers, including US, EU, Russia and China, because Turkey serves as a counterweight and a balancing factor in the region. But no one will allow Turkey to become a dominant force in the Middle East. Neither Russia, EU or US, nor the aforementioned Middle East players can afford that.

Therefore, it really is inconsequential whether Erdogan is or isn’t an intellectual ally of Muslim Brotherhood. Because of its very special geopolitical position Turkey serves as a bridge between East and West, but doesn’t control much of either.

Such situation suits all super-powers. Turkey is very valuable as a somewhat strong bridge-country, but not too strong. Turkey can do pin pricks to remind of its presence and to demand attention, such as interfering in Syria, sending refugees to the EU, delaying Turkish Stream, or pretending they won’t let US ships into the Black Sea. In the end Turkey always plays ball because that’s the extent of Turkey’s leash.

As a consequence, Turkey’s politics can only work within a certain narrow corridor. Turkish leader who doesn’t stay within this corridor, will not survive. Erdogan has tried to expand this corridor by conducting his own policies. It wasn’t very successful and he has reached the end of his leash.

There is another reason Erdogan is trying to align himself with someone – anyone. The Middle East is changing rapidly. The borders are still being held in place due to the 1945 agreements between USSR, US and UK. However, soon the borders in the Middle East and some other world regions will start crumbling as the new reality emerges.

ISIL, Muslim Brotherhood and dozens, if not hundreds, of other formations that are mushrooming in the Middle East try to grab as much land as they can. The states try to defend their borders, while at the same time attempt to grab what they can as well. Erdogan simply has to stay in the game because in that reality it’s eat or be eaten. He has to play the aggressive game of expansion, or his country will be contracting. He also has to account for contingencies.

This is beyond Erdogan and Turkey’s long-cherished imperial ambitions – it is the reality of survival. This kind of situation exists in some other regions of the world as well.

On different levels – be it social, financial, political or military – this scenario of rapid change and struggle to keep control of the situation is something facing now the majority of countries. Welcome to the Earth Shift!

Therefore, take with a grain of salt what anyone in the Middle East says. Again, this is not to say that Assad isn’t right. He says what he feels is true from his perspective. The entanglements of this region of the world are such that everyone is pulling the blanket onto themselves, touting their own agenda as the only correct one.

But the world leaders such as Putin need to be well above this regional fight; global geopolitical thinking is required. Russia is well-positioned to play a pacifying and balancing role in the Middle East. In fact, it’s the only country that can accomplish this feat.

More breaking stuff:

More news from the Middle East and Syria are coming. Things are shifting fast. The US stance on Assad, Syria and on ISIL is cracking due to Russia’s skillful diplomacy and strides to create anti-ISIL coalition. The international pressure on the US is growing. Some of the biggest pressure is coming from the EU experiencing an unheard of refugee crisis.

Vladimir Putin coming to speak at the UN General Assembly in a week is also a part of the surprise change in the US position. Generally speaking, Putin’s speech at the UNGA has become quite a phenomenon, acquiring a life of its own before it even happened. Putin hasn’t dropped that bomb on New York yet, but the aftermath of the future event is already bearing consequences. I’ll have more on all the developments this week and next. Stay tuned!

This is an interesting related bit, demonstrating just how successfully Russia has made strides in shaping up a coalition on Syria:

Putin to Netanyahu: Syrian army too busy saving country to threaten Israel. In Moscow talks Russia and Israel agreed on intel sharing.



The projected release of the New Khazarian Khaganate Earth Shift Report is next week.

I am also working on some new, surprise Earth Shift Reports. One of them will be about the volatile and important situation developing around the Black Sea region, where a new geopolitical faultline is forming. I’ll share the hot intel from Odessa, Pridnestrovie, Moldova, Romania and Turkey. Stay tuned.

As usual, go to for all Earth Shift Report links.


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About Lada Ray

Lada Ray is a linguist & former financial consultant with Smith Barney. Born in Russia, Lada lived and traveled to nearly 30 countries on most continents. She is the internationally certified Feng Shui Master and author of 3 novels + multiple novelettes; most notably, top-rated metaphysical thriller THE EARTH SHIFTER & bestselling thriller GOLD TRAIN (Accidental Spy Russia Adventure). Lada has extensively written re. Russia, world cultures, geopolitics, empire collapse, feng shui and consciousness. She is known for her accurate predictions. Lada's Blogs: FuturisTrendcast - geopolitics and predictions. Lada Ray Blog - books, writing, world cultures. We are presently working on expanding Lada Ray Youtube channel to include Lada's original geopolitical analysis and far-reaching global predictions, as well as her mystical futurism. The world is going through a massive tectonic shift of consciousness on all levels and in all aspects of life. Make sure you are prepared! Subscribe!

Posted on September 21, 2015, in Ask Lada, Eurasia, Geopolitical Trends, Middle East, Russia and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. There is a lot to chew over there. Good info. Do you think Russia is going to build a much larger military presence on the coast of Syria now and keep it? Some say that the USSR during Hafez Assad’s days didn’t really have that large of a presence there, but that might be spin.

    Turkey is a fascinating case. It is perhaps the most Eurasian country after Russia. On the one hand, it has developed economically, industrially, and technologically to a great degree over the last couple of decades, on the other hand, it is caught in a tough situation. But that is what makes a shift, right? Europe and the old powers have declined a lot, and new powers, such as China and Turkey, have been rising a lot. And now Turkey may be hitting the wall, probably more due to geopolitics than anything else, though the internal problems are significant. So what happens there is going to say a lot about what happens in that whole part of the world. According to most GDP calculations, Turkey is number 18 in the world, which isn’t bad. Twice Iran’s and almost three times Egypt’s.

    For what it is worth, I visited Turkey not long after Erdoghan went to war with his former partners in the Gulen network, which is widely seen as being closely in the Langley network. The English papers and pro-Western representatives were hysterically attacking Erdoghan at this point. Erdoghan also only wanted to invade Syria if the West promised to finish the job and not leave Turkey strung out to dry in a disastrous situation if things didn’t work out. That is the context in the idea of a Turkish Stream, which many think was more of a PR thing for both Russia and Turkey to use as leverage with the EU. Not saying that is the case, but it is a widely held opinion.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, Russia is expanding its military base. The funny thing: many really want the Russian base there as a stabilizing factor. EU, Iran and Egypt, for example. In the final analysis, so does Israel. US and Saudis will have to swallow it.

      Stream is more than PR, and has real basis behind it. But it is a huge gargaining chip against EU for Russia, Turkey and Greece. One does not preclude the other. Of course it will have difficulty being built due to turmoil in the next couple of years. It may even end up going through different countries.
      Long story, maybe some other time.

      Turkey is hitting a wall because of all three: geopolitics, its own political mistakes and internal/historic factors. This has to be expected due to shift, as I explained.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Reblogged this on 1EarthUnited and commented:
    Wow, I look forward to Putin’s speech at the UN General Assembly next week! Great analysis Lada.🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank You.


  4. Turkey like it’s Western European counterparts haven’t kicked it’s imperial addiction yet. As for the USA really the CSA resurrected it’s in eternal Dark Age mode which it wants to spread Worldwide.


  5. Lada, thanks for exploring details about this hugely complex region. Indeed it seems that the long-established dominance by the US/ISRAEL/SAUDIS is about to be changed, no wonder israelis and saudis have started going to Moscow recently. It will be great to learn more from your insights about this theme ! All the best !


  1. Pingback: Lada Ray analyzes the Mideast | Exopermaculture

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